Mid-life investment planning

Q – My wife and I own our own home. We have been diligent about paying down our mortgage but at the cost of investing in the equity markets. Our house is fully paid for now, and we are both in our mid-40s. What is your advice on how to start investing in the markets? – Jason S., Calgary, Alberta

A – My first piece of advice is to start immediately, with a number of cautions. Investing in the equity or fixed income market is a long-term proposition, and the longer the time your money has to grow and compound, the better off you will be. And you’ll have some time to recover from the markets’ inevitable downswings. It is a difficult time to be an investor, because the world has changed and continues to change at a rapid pace. So you will first need to assess your risk tolerance, investment objectives, and time horizon. You’ll then need to put together a financial plan. Luckily, in your mid-40s, you still have perhaps 15 years to aim for at least some growth before shifting gears more towards safety and income in the pre-retirement phase of your lives. I would recommend that you hire a Certified Financial Planner or other qualified financial advisor. There are so many different types of mutual funds, segregated funds, individual stocks, and bonds to choose from that you may need help to determine what is most suitable for meeting your objectives consistent with your plan. – R.T.

Robyn Thompson, CFP, is the founder of Castlemark Wealth Management, a boutique financial advisory firm, specializing in customized financial, investment, insurance, and retirement planning. Phone 416-828-7159 or email today to rthompson@castlemarkwealth.com for a no-obligation, no-charge Castlemark Integrity Financial Planning consultation.

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The foregoing is for general information purposes only and is the opinion of the writer. No guarantee of investment performance is made or implied. It is not intended to provide specific personalized advice including, without limitation, investment, financial, legal, accounting or tax advice. Please contact the author to discuss your particular circumstances.